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A Message from the Author
There are many questions, fears, and misconceptions about Islam and Muslims. I believe these books can answer questions, build bridges, and promote understanding. Since 2009, I have facilitated interfaith dialogues with many different people.
The conversations in these books are real. Some are curious, some are concerned, some are hostile, some are academic, and some are soul-searching. My hope is that this can be a small step towards better understanding and harmony.
While there are many books that teach Islam, preach it, criticize it, or academically explain it, my focus in these books is different.
I have compiled the best and most interesting conversations over the course of my outreach and interfaith work. These transcripts showcase everyday people — from angry and concerned to inquisitive and supportive — asking real questions and getting straight answers about Islam.
To be clear, my purpose is simply to provide accurate information on my faith — to set the record straight — nothing more; nothing less. This can only happen if you, dear reader, are willing to listen to our side of the story.
Remember: With dialogue, Comes understanding.
Ahmed Lotfy Rashed
“There’s never been a more important time for interfaith dialogue than now. Rashed explains how the tenets of his religion forbid the sort of behaviour shown by extremist groups. At the same time, he doesn’t sugar-coat the religion’s ethics. Overall, I find it a balanced and informative book and would recommend it.”
Allister N. Thompson
“Loved this book! The format is new and innovative, and the content is very informative. Instead of a question/answer straight out format, it’s a series of written conversations between two people. It doesn’t read as contrived or scripted and gave me new insight into the Muslim faith.”
The Faerie Review
“Reading What Would a Muslim Say felt like taking a journey in the minds and hearts of people and what they feel and think about Islam and Muslims. The questions are honest and reflect the thirst that people have to understand and explore what Islam is about. Ahmed Rashed remained focused in his answers even when it got really tough or emotional. He kept the answers balanced as they were also honest and spoke to the level of the person asking the questions with no judgement and with extreme patience, representing what Islam stands for and what good Muslims are like.”
Muslim Chaplain, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
“Typically, we find books on Islam that only cover the basics, but lacking personality and style. One of the unique traits of my teacher and colleague, Ahmed Rashed, is his ability to be methodical, precise and eloquent simultaneously rather than at the expense of the other. When I was reading this, I found the combination of content from scripture to prophetic tradition and then historical perspectives along with striking metaphors and analogies to be extraordinary. Hopefully this booklet and What Would a Muslim Say are only the beginning.”